Many of you are just curious what health and other benefits you might see from taking a month-long break from alcohol. Good for you! Many of us are surprised at the subtle and not-so-subtle changes. Donna will talk more about those tomorrow.
Meanwhile, Bruce has a message for those of us who may have binged on New Year’s Eve:
How many times have you woken up with a hangover? If you’re like me, you’ve had more than your share of such mornings over the years. And if you’re like me, on most of those mornings you were probably more than a little bit mad and irritated and frustrated with yourself for putting yourself in such a miserable state of being. As if there were two of you: the night-you who is a self-indulgent pleasure seeker, consequences be damned, and the poor suffering morning-you who just wants to wake up feeling good and productive for once if that isn’t too much to ask, thank you. If you’re like me, on many of those mornings you engaged in an imaginary conversation with the you who was responsible for the hangovers, trying to talk some sense so that the cycle of indulgence followed by regret might be broken. It’s been said many times on this forum: in the morning you never regret the drinks you didn’t have the night before. Unfortunately, when you really need to hear those words, the morning-you has turned into the night-you, like Jekyll into Hyde, and the cycle continues.
Now that you’re taking a break from alcohol, you’re finally giving the morning-you the voice and position of power it deserves. Reflect on that each morning as you get ready for the day: how happy morning-you is to finally be in the driver’s seat, how proud it is of night-you for giving it this long overdue break, and a chance to prove it was right all along. You ARE better, not just in the morning but the whole day: when you get off to a good start, all of you benefits all day long. The more you give morning-you a voice, the stronger it becomes, less hesitant, less shell-shocked. As that voice gets stronger, maybe it will finally be able to stand up to the irrational demands night-you may make when you return to drinking, be less likely to submissively give in.
Are you still afraid that you might revert to your old habits at the end of this month, or maybe even tonight, that the night-you might take control again? Here’s an idea: most of us have a video camera on our person at all times (i.e., a smart phone) so why don’t you go ahead and let morning-you really talk to that other you? Make a short recording of yourself telling the other you how good you feel, how proud you are of yourself for not drinking the night before, how you had the power to do it. Imagine the kinds of objections you might have when you are thinking of drinking, and talk yourself out of it. You know best the kinds of arguments that work best on you. And if or when you feel that voice getting weak, pull out that recording and listen to yourself. Take this opportunity to truly give voice to the thoughts and feelings that are your own. You really do know what’s best and it’s about time that voice was heard.
This post was contributed by MM Forum’s Bruce